Shade examined the body on the exam table and turned back to the med officer. "What would you recommend?" The man swallowed hard. "Just to wake her? I , ah, my lord-" He drew a deep breath. "We've already tried stimulants and increasing response to physical sensation. The brain damage should not have caused this sort of coma, but perhaps it's having some unusual effect. She has some genetic differences attributable to human population drift. Without any prior history, I can't be sure." Shade nodded for the man to continue, reflecting that Lord Vader's propensity for strangling personnel had resulted in some unfortunate reactions to other Sith lords. This amount of fear actively reduced efficiency. "I, I'm sure your lordship is far wiser than I in matters of, um, interrogation. Sir, I and my staff stand ready to assist you in any way we can, of course." Shade held up a hand. "Doctor. I have no desire to punish you or your staff for matters beyond your control. I assume final responsibility for the outcome of this situation myself. Please, give me your evaluation." The man nodded sharply. "Very well, my lord. The prisoner is a Force user of unknown strength. The head injury is insufficient to account for continuing unconsciousness. The damage to the back muscles is healing as expected. I would presume this.withdrawal is some manifestation of her ability in the Force. Neural scans indicate no reaction to environmental stimuli of any kind. I assume that the primary goal at the moment is to force resumption of the conscious state?" Shade nodded. "I can think of some strategies to achieve that, but I cannot and will not guarantee success." He paused. "The first is to maintain the status quo and watch for changes. The second is to again use stimulants and sensory enhancers, this time with the addition of stronger negative stimuli and a Force inhibitor. I have to be honest; I don't like doing that on top of an unhealed head injury. It's likely to cause further damage, and I can't completely control where. We may be able to heal the tissue, but we can't recover memory that we've destroyed." "I take it you have a third option?" The officer paled. "Yes, sir. We could heal the damage entirely, giving you a clean starting ground. If the head injury is a determinative factor, this should remove it. I cannot recommend any particular course of action. These opinions are entirely my own." Shade looked at the man quietly. "Of course. Doctor Stiasny, please believe me when I tell you that I will not blame you for things you cannot control. Interrogation is a risk. Methods often work differently on different subjects. If I ask for your recommendation rather than immediately measurable facts, I take that into account. If I choose to pursue the third option, what would you recommend?" "Immediate bacta treatment. We have the supplies on board. Frankly, I'd rather save them for our own people, but bacta is the fastest and surest way of healing these injuries." "We have adequate supplies, Doctor." Shade smiled slightly. "Although I approve of your loyalty to our crew. Please institute the bacta treatment. Advise me when it has been completed." "Yes, my lord." The doctor bowed, trying to hide his relief that the Sith were leaving his sickbay in one piece. Shade exited. He would have to speak with Darana about the best way to deal with the new and apparently nervous addition to the medical staff, and the advisability of accepting any crew that had worked with Lord Vader. Fortunately, Stiasny didn't seem defiant, angry, or incompetent-just frightened out of his ability to make independent decisions.
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